The Corner

Jail Sentence Overturned for Pakistani Doctor Who Helped Find Bin Laden

Shakil Afridi, the Pakistani doctor who was jailed for his role in helping the United States locate Osama bin Laden, will get a retrial after one of the country’s judicial officials determined Afridi was wrongly sentenced. According to the decision, a lower-level official exceeded his authority when he sentenced Afridi to 33 years in prison.

“The assistant political agent played the role of a magistrate for which he was not authorized,” the official said.

Afridi was involved in helping the CIA to confirm that bin Laden was in the city of Abbottabad by obtaining DNA samples under the pretext of a vaccination project. He was arrested on the Pakistani border as he tried to flee the country days after the raid on bin Laden’s compound. He was later charged with and sentenced for being a member of Lashkar-e-Islam, a militant group (Afridi denied being a member, and the group said it had no ties with him as well).

Afridi’s imprisonment caused some friction between Pakistan and the U.S., with lawmakers accusing the country of unjustly jailing the doctor and raising questions about the Pakistani government’s knowledge of bin Laden’s location. Representative Dana Rohrabacher (R., Calif.) called on President Obama to intervene to release Afridi, and a Senate appropriations committee voted to withhold $33 million in foreign aid to Pakistan, $1 million for every year of his sentence.

Most Popular

U.S.

The Gun-Control Debate Could Break America

Last night, the nation witnessed what looked a lot like an extended version of the famous “two minutes hate” from George Orwell’s novel 1984. During a CNN town hall on gun control, a furious crowd of Americans jeered at two conservatives, Marco Rubio and Dana Loesch, who stood in defense of the Second ... Read More
Law & the Courts

Obstruction Confusions

In his Lawfare critique of one of my several columns about the purported obstruction case against President Trump, Gabriel Schoenfeld loses me — as I suspect he will lose others — when he says of himself, “I do not think I am Trump-deranged.” Gabe graciously expresses fondness for me, and the feeling is ... Read More
Politics & Policy

Students’ Anti-Gun Views

Are children innocents or are they leaders? Are teenagers fully autonomous decision-makers, or are they lumps of mental clay, still being molded by unfolding brain development? The Left seems to have a particularly hard time deciding these days. Take, for example, the high-school students from Parkland, ... Read More
PC Culture

Kill Chic

We live in a society in which gratuitous violence is the trademark of video games, movies, and popular music. Kill this, shoot that in repugnant detail becomes a race to the visual and spoken bottom. We have gone from Sam Peckinpah’s realistic portrayal of violent death to a gory ritual of metal ripping ... Read More